Evil Dead: A Fistful of Boomstick

November 3, 2003

[floatleft]http://www.snackbar-games.com/images/reviews/evildead/cover.jpg[/floatleft]I seem to be on a role lately with all these game/movie combos. I assure you that it is merely a coincidence. I love Evil Dead, and I enjoy watching Bruce Campbell. When it comes to movies, I can sit through a terrible movie and afterwards justify why it wasn’t all that bad. I am there for the entertainment value and over the top B movies with chainsaws for hands keep me thoroughly entertained. I am not going to say I awaited the arrival of this game though, because I didn’t. I figured it would be an entertaining hack and slash game at best, but to my surprise it was much more than that. I would be lying if I said that the game blew me away with a new inventive style of gameplay, but I was surprised by how much they actually put into this game. Normally, games based on movie content are shallow representations of the characters from the movie. Fist Full of Boomstick captures the true essence of Bruce Campbell. Bruce did the voice acting and the FMVs did a superb job with Bruce’s likeness.

Before you think that I have gone loony and think I am proclaiming Fist Full of Boomstick as a “must buy” title, allow me to expound on my thoughts. Graphically, Evil Dead is nothing to write home about. The graphics get the job done, but they surely aren’t going to win any awards in the “Breakthrough performance by a pixel” award… ok that was really bad I know.

In the realm of camera control, which is my biggest complaint with almost any game, Evil Dead certainly left me hanging. The camera was stuck facing the same direction as your character and it may as well not have been implemented at all. The camera faces forward at all times and the camera analog stick will allow you the ever so slightest camera adjustment in each direction. If you are having difficultly seeing something, don’t bother using the camera controls, as they probably will not help you.

[floatright]http://www.snackbar-games.com/images/reviews/evildead/ss03_thumb.jpg[/floatright]The games’ sound was an area that I wasn’t impressed with either, but should I have been? B-movies often exploit the fact that they cut corners in special effects on purpose. They make themselves the butt of the joke in regards to special effects or, lack thereof. Fist Full of Boomstick adhered nicely to this rule as I felt the sound effects were mildly cheesy and it seemed to be completely lacking in the overall department.

The most important factor in judging a game to me is the fun factor and gameplay. I can generally look past terrible (not too terrible I hope) graphics and control schemes if I truly have fun playing the game. FFoB kept me entertained for a short while, but the incredibly linear gameplay got boring. You just ran around the streets lined with porno shops looking for the undead to kill. While that sounds fun for a short time, it does get boring. On occasion there was a little bit of thinking required to defeat a large group of the undead. Earlier I mentioned that the game was much more than I expected. What I was referring to was your ability to learn spells and cast them. It added a little variety to the game, but not much. The spells are button combinations that can be looked up in a book you carry in your inventory. Your inventory also houses your multiple weapons and other items you may need to utilize later on.

[floatleft]http://www.snackbar-games.com/images/reviews/evildead/ss04_thumb.jpg[/floatleft]If THQ was going for a below average action adventure game with a slight dash of character leveling, then they got this one perfect. The character “upgrades” aren’t even enough for me say it has RPG elements. Unless you have been dying to play the next Evil Dead game since “Hail to the King” was released a few years back I highly recommend you just let this one go. FFoB falls short of even a recommendation to rent as we have recently been hit with some pretty high quality titles in this genre. If you find yourself staring at this title in a game store, do yourself a favor and let it rest in peace.

Score: 2/5

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